Miscellaneous Classroom Innovations

Development of a Case Study Problem in Engineering Economics Based on a Telephone Replacement Undertaking at UW-Platteville

  • Bidhan C. Roy (University of Wisconsin - Platteville)
  • Matthew Roberts (Southern Utah University)
  • Cathy Riedl-Farrey (University of Wisconsin - Platteville)
  • Gregory R. Bies (University of Wisconsin - Platteville)


General Engineering 2820 (GE 2820) is a course offered to all undergraduate students at the College of Engineering, Mathematics, and Science (EMS), University of Wisconsin –Platteville. A constant exercise for the instructors in this course is to update the course material with interesting case study problems which are then solved by students as an assignment. In recent days, the University of Wisconsin –Platteville, is contemplating replacement of its current Voice over IP (VoIP) phone service (catered by the local utility company “Century Link”) with a “Unified Communications” service. Current services cost the university $18,900 per month. With the new system being contemplated and the since the university has necessary infrastructure in place, the cost for the university is estimated to be approximately $7000 per month. Therefore, a breakeven analysis was undertaken for studying the economic feasibility of this undertaking by the students in this course. Part of this case study involved – defining the problem correctly, processing the interest rate data so as to calculate an appropriate effective annual rate, processing the financial data related to the phone services, and finally performing a breakeven study using the annual worth computation. Based on student performances, such case study problems have benefited the students in understanding the concepts of time value of money and various method of analysis in engineering economy.

How to Cite:

Roy, B. C. & Roberts, M. & Riedl-Farrey, C. & Bies, G. R., (2014) “Development of a Case Study Problem in Engineering Economics Based on a Telephone Replacement Undertaking at UW-Platteville”, 2014 ASEE North Midwest Section Conference 2014(1), 1-5. doi: https://doi.org/10.17077/aseenmw2014.1034

Rights: Copyright © 2014, Bidhan C. Roy, Matthew Roberts, Cathy Riedl-Farrey, and Gregory R. Bies

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Published on
17 Oct 2014
Peer Reviewed